On March 21, 1947, Ilene Eagen was brought to Mankato, Minnesota, to the dental office of W. A. Groebner for an abortion. Court records indicate that Ilene was pressured into the abortion by her boyfriend, Raymond Older, who refused to marry her and threatened her with bodily harm if she refused an abortion.
After the abortion, Ilene became violently ill and lost consciousness. Groebner and Older failed to seek or provide properly care for the sick woman. Instead, Older took Ilene to his service station in Granada, Minnesota and kept her there through the remaineder of the night, into the morning of March 22.
Older allowed Ilene to languish without medical care. She died March 24.
Ilene left a seven-year-old daughter motherless.
Older tried to escape civil liability on the grounds that despite his refusal to marry her, and the threats, Ilene had consented to the abortion and that therefore she was responsible for her own sickness and subsequent death.
Source: 227 Minn. 154, 34 N.W.2d 700; Supreme Court of Minnesota. True v. Older et al.No. 34682.Nov. 19, 1948. Action by Helen J. True, special administratix of the estate of Ilene Eagen, deceased, against Raymond Older and another for wrongful death
Prolifers will do well to remember that although recriminalization will make forced and coerced abortion riskier for the scumbag man, it won't be enough to eliminate the problem. Our current efforts to eliminate forced and coerced abortions need to include approaches that will continue to be effective even after legal protection is restored to the unborn child.
For more on pre-legalization abortion, see The Bad Old Days of Abortion
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